NGC 1999

Alt. Designations: NGC 1999
Object Type: emission nebula
Constellation: Orion
Distance: 1.5 kly
Right Ascension: 05h 36m 25.4s
Declination: -06° 42´ 57"
Visual Magnitude:
Apparent Dimension: 2.0´ X 2.0´
Best Month To View: Dec

South of the large star-forming region known as the Orion Nebula, lies bright blue reflection nebula NGC 1999. At the edge of the Orion molecular cloud complex some 1,500 light-years distant, NGC 1999's illumination is provided by the embedded variable star V380 Orionis. That nebula is marked with a dark T-shape near center that spans about 10 light-years. The dark shape was once assumed to be an obscuring dust cloud seen in silhouette against the bright reflection nebula, but recent infrared images indicate the shape is likely a hole blown through the nebula itself by energetic young stars.